What we do on weekend nights when Daddy is at work...the aquarium.
 This fish was my greatest fear as a tweenager snorkling in the Virgin Islands. I once read that the largest of the potato cods (Epinephelus tukula) have sometimes been known to swallow a diver whole, and then spit him/her out again. I never could quite shake off that visual.
 Q, however, has never been afraid of fish. Her one and only fear at the aquarium is the simulated flash-flood room. And actually, her fear is much more rational than mine. My odds of being swallowed by a potato cod are exponentially smaller than her odds of being endangered by a flash flood. Here in the Rocky Mountain West, we are very close to the redrock deserts of Utah and Nevada, prime flash-flood territory. During my childless years I spent many a month hiking and camping in slot-canyon territory, where one always has to be on the lookout for microbursts that might easily turn a beautiful canyon into a deathtrap.
 Q proving she is not afraid of he shark tank.

 In landlocked Colorado, it sometimes feels lovely to immerse onesself in the underwater world, even if only virtually.

Ready to feed the stingrays, Q shows her fish-food-holding form. She is neither squeamish of bait fish nor fearful of the underwater critters. 
 It was late-night on a Sunday, and these rays had been fed heavily all weekend, so it was no easy task to attract them with food. 
"Come on, come oooooonnnnnnn...."
Q is using all her charms here to attract a ray.
 Nope. Passing her by.
 First eye contact! Lookin' good. And then....
 ...full-body contact. Two stingrays entirely engulf Q's arm, up to the elbow. I'm still not sure I understand how, with their eyes on top and their mouths on the bottom, they are able to accurately select the fish snack without eating any of her fingers. But she never doubted. She didn't even flinch. She trusted them entirely. It's good to see a child so confident in the natural world that she can give this much trust to a creature of the sea.
Q loves her some stingrays, with their beautiful, flexible, silky bodies.
Announcing.......Some exciting new projects with the amazing Michele Brulé of Enchanted Enfant!

Michele's lush and dreamy designs have graced the covers and pages of VOGUE Bambini, Martha Stewart Weddings, and have appeared on the red carpet at film premiers and television events.

I am proud and excited to be working on these new projects for Enchanted Enfant. Because they are still under wraps, I can't show you any previews here, but right now you can see a beautiful preview slideshow on the Enchanted Enfant site here! Just click on the "Estelle: the book" button in the menu.

Go look, go look! It's so beautiful!


 Q and her magic tricks.
 Wearing ribbon overalls by Juney Bloom...which we LOVE!


And on a different subject....
Check out Babiekins Magazine's fab interview with the über-cool Mini & Maximus. The owl tee in the left picture is my design for their upcoming collection.


 We celebrated the lunar new year quietly with friends at the restaurant where Mike sometimes cooks.
It was crab night at Highland Pacific!

 Is there anything better for the heart than the sight of a pile of happy kids?
 Most of the photos in this post were taken by my friend's daughter Sasha. That's her with Q in the photo below. I think she has a future in photography!

 Cake...gone before you know it.


A bedtime moment with Q:

(Scene, a darkened bedroom, a small girl tucked under a huge duvet, her night-dark eyes already at half-mast.  A mommy sitting on top of the duvet, holding her daughters slender, sleep-warm hand)

Q: (tugging my hand inexorably toward her) Why you have to leave, mommy? 

Me: Because I have to work, and it's time for you to sleep. But you're my girl, forever and ever, and I love you more than anything in the whole, wide world. More than the moon and all the stars.

Q: (gripping my hand a little tighter) And no one takes me away. 

Me: And no one ever takes you away, not ever, never, ever. 

Q: (smiles sleepily, and then raises one drowsy hand and carefully traces the outlines of my face in the air) That's you, mommy. I just drew your face. That's you.

I waited until I was outside her room to melt into a puddle of warm butter on the floor.


 With so much growth, so many new friends, and so many other distractions in her life (school, gymnastics, the ongoing operatic drama of her relationship with her two embattled boyfriends...) it has been a while since she remembered her once-beloved guitars.
 In the past week, however, she has been going through a rock-n-roll renaissance.
Her comeback just might be epic.


 Off to the stock show...check out the snowy front range of the Rocky Mountains in the background!
 Stock show 2012...flashier than ever before!
 This sheep was very interested in my telling him how handsome he was...

 Sheep shower!
 Q trying to figure out whether that cotton candy could fit into her stomach.
 It did.

 Stadium jumping.
It was a good day at the Stock Show, and far balmier than the past couple of years!!!


 Sun and snow, the best of Colorado.